Nevada officials still expect COVID-19 surge after holidays |

Nevada officials still expect COVID-19 surge after holidays

Health experts say it’s too soon to say what impact the holidays will have on the pandemic in Nevada.

But Task Force Director Caleb Cage made it clear some level of a surge is expected.

“At this point, it’s too soon to determine the impact from the holidays,” he said during the Monday briefing on the virus.

He said that officials expect some increase as Nevada has seen in other earlier holidays this year.

He said the governor’s restrictions on events where more than a few people gather, social distancing, sanitization, mask wearing and other precautions are still in place.

“They’re not changing for New Year’s Day or any events associated with them,” he said.  “We really are expecting our local partners to enforce as they said they would. State enforcement officials will also be responding.”

In the meantime, he said vaccine distribution and delivery is proceeding well.

“I’m extremely proud of the work that’s been done by DHHS and their communication team,” he said.

Cage said they’ve been planning for the arrival and distribution of vaccines since April and that things are going well.

He and Dave Fogerson, head of the Division of Emergency Management, said some hospitals in the state are looking at ways to expand bed capacity if necessary but that they aren’t aware of any specific plans beyond what has already been announced. Primarily that is Renown’s conversion of one floor of a parking garage into a ward for COVID-19 patients.

Cage said as of this morning, Nevada has logged 217,509 cases of the virus and conducted more than 2.2 million tests.

But positivity is still very high. Cage said it remains at 19.8 percent over the past 14 days and there are 1,899 people hospitalized with the infection.

A total of 2,973 people had died from the virus as of Monday morning.